First LG led the way with the Optimus 3D that quite literally, wowed us all with what they had accomplished. Other than the Optimus 2X, the Korean company didn’t really have any high-end droid under its belt, so this put them back in the running. HTC, on the other hand is one company who don’t have a shortage of Android handsets in the market, in fact, they have a whole bunch of them in the 20K and above price bracket. Their latest incarnation, the Evo 3D goes head on with LG’s offering since these are the only two 3D ready handsets today. But, is it good enough to repair the damage caused by HTC’s previous flagship? Lets find out.
On video: HTC EVO 3D
Design and Build
Where the Optimus 3D felt big and gigantic in your palm, the Evo 3D somehow doesn’t. It even feels a tad lighter, even though it does weigh 170g, which is heavy for a mobile phone. The front portion reminds us a lot of the Incredible S with the same rubber coating around the edges and the back. The plastics used are of high quality and it looks and feels like it’s built to last. The four shortcut buttons at the bottom are easy to access, but sadly don’t change orientation when you switch to landscape mode. The 4.3-inch screen sports a higher resolution than LG at 540x960, which makes everything appear a little bit sharper and clearer. There’s a front 1.3MP camera along with other sensors like Gyro, Proximity and Ambient light sensor.
Looks good and is built well
Up top, we have the power/sleep and 3.5mm headphone jack followed by an oversized volume rocker on the side. HTC have included a physical shutter button for the camera and a switch to toggle between 2D and 3D mode. The microUSB port is placed on the other side. Instead of a plain rubber back, we have some nice texture which not only improves grip, it also looks cool. The two cameras and the dual-LED flash have a nice red bezel around giving it a sporty look. The back cover is quite flexible making it easy to remove. The microSD card slot features hot swap, but you’ll have to remove the battery to insert the SIM.
HTC have paid good attention to detail
Overall, we prefer the styling of the HTC Evo 3D to LG's offering. Plus, it’s a bit easier to hold in your hand and doesn’t feel very heavy.
The phone is powered by Qualcomm’s MSM8660 dual-core processor running at 1.2GHz and runs the latest version of Android 2.3.4. Running on top is Sense 3.0, offering the same features we saw in the Sensation. The interface is swift and fluid making navigation effortless. The apps can be sorted according to most used or downloaded. HTC has included a ton of personalization options right from skins, scenes to different types of lock screens.
Sense 3.0 doing what it does best
Sense 3.0 includes some bundled apps like Adobe Reader, Facebook, Friend Stream, HTC Hub, HTC Likes, Polaris Office, Reader, SoundHound, Stocks and Weather. The notification bar has also been heavily modified to show you the recently closed apps on one tab and a ‘Quick Settings’ tab, which includes toggle switches for Wi-Fi, GPS, etc. HTC has packaged the phone well with many productivity and leisure apps pre-loaded which we'll take a look at later.
The 3D experience
HTC are using the similar 3D technique like LG, but we found their implementation to be slightly better and that difference is apparent immediately. For starters, the 3D effect is a lot more forgiving to your eyes and while it still has a narrow sweet spot, the effect just seems better. There is barely any crosstalk and the 3D effect is sharp and clear by just using a pair of active shutter glasses.
All the 3D content is grouped together
All your 3D images and videos are grouped together in the gallery so it’s easier to find them. In case the 3D effect is not right, you can adjust it. There is no 3D menu or store from where you can get 3D content unlike LG’s offering. Once you snap a picture, you also get the option of converting it to 2D.